Chris crossed

9th March 2001 at 00:00
Chris Woodhead's valedictory opus in the Daily Telegraph was delayed by the three-month quarantine imposed on departing public servants - a policy more humane than slaughter but less reliable from the Government's point of view.

Much could be said about the outrageous style and slight content of these articles. But does it matter any more? He confirmed what we always knew - that he approached his job ideologically rather than objectively. The final straw, he maintains, was ministers not accepting his personal views on the purpose of education.

More likely, h understood his masters no longer had any use for an official tormentor with the profession facing meltdown. Perhaps even he had become bored with the absurd persona he created in the role of chief inspector and needed to cash in his journalistic chips before the election.

If there is a "black hole" at the heart of education policy, as he alleged, it is the failure of successive reforms to carry teachers with them. Chris Woodhead was not solely responsible for that, though he contributed in various guises. But now he is just another reactionary pundit.

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